Are you ready to rock? You will be, once you hit “play” (remembering to strap-in first) on this week’s Video Clip for the tune “Joyrider”, from one-man electronic dance outfit, Pictureplane (AKA producer Travis Egedy). In a song that combines vibrant electronic dance and pop without ever losing sight of the melody, Pictureplane’s flow is ultra-smooth and his beats are super sick. I love this song! Shot primarily an auto salvage yard, with interspersed shots of Egedy in a driving simulator (Joy Ride – get it?), or dancing in a yellow spray-painted room, the video is visually engaging from start to finish. If I heard “Joyrider” in a club, I would dance my ass off to it all night.
“Joyrider” can be found on Pictureplane’s most recent album, Technomancer, which is out now via the Anticon Records label. Recommend if you like: Tame Impala, MGMT or BØRNS. Enjoy!
“Big Eyes” is the name of one of my favorite Cheap Trick songs, and it’s probably no accident that the Brooklyn based rock quartet also known by that name harnesses the same power pop sensibility accompanied by a hard rock edge — which is a proven formula for nearly-flawless music. Active since 2009, through various line-up shifts, Big Eyes is the project of Kaitlyn (Kait) Eldridge, a singer/songwriter/guitarist who fronts her band with the same self-possession that Joan Jett fronts The Blackhearts. In other words, she’s badass.
Aurally, “Stake My Claim” is instantly contagious, with its razor-sharp lead guitar and circular rhythm that move the body instinctively. It feels fresh and modern while drawing on the power of classic rock. Lyrically, Eldridge explores a heavy groove with the lyrics “‘Cause nothing stays the same / stake my claim,” and a theme centered around dissatisfaction and a need for change. Visually, the kick ass performance shots mixed with urban street scenes makes this song an ideal summer anthem!
Mostly, Big Eyes‘ energetic and engaging sound reminds me very fondly of Damone, a long-defunct but utterly fantastic rock band from the Boston area (also female fronted) that embraced a fierce power pop edge. Big Eyes includes Paul Ridenour on guitar and backup vocals, Malcolm Donaldson on bass, and Griffin Harrison on drums. “Stake My Claim” is taken from the upcoming album of the same title, due to be released on August 19th, 2016 via Don Giovanni Records. Catch Big Eyes on tour this August (see dates below). Enjoy!
Big Eyes on Tour This Summer:
8/16 – Brooklyn NY @ Alphaville
8/17 – Pittsburgh PA @ Howlers
8/18 – Chicago IL @ Empty Bottle
8/19 – Milwaukee WI @ Company Brewing
8/20 – Madison WI @ Mickey’s Tavern
8/21 – Fargo ND @ The Aquarium
8/22 – Minneapolis MN @ Triple Rock Social Club
8/23 – Iowa City IA @ The Mill
8/24 – Ft. Wayne IN @ Brass Rail
8/25 – Cleveland OH @ Now That’s Class
8/26 – Cincinatti OH @ Northside Yacht Club
8/27 – Columbus OH @ Rumba
8/28 – Buffalo NY @ Mohawk Place
8/29 – Boston MA @ Great Scott
8/30 – Kingston NY @ BSP
9/18 – Asbury Park NJ @ New Alternative Music Festival (Convention Hall)
Isn’t it fun to discover that a band you loved for a brief period of time, maybe decades ago, is still together and recording songs that are pretty darn good? I love it when that happens. For example, we sure did go crazy go for the the British band James and their fun song, “Laid” (circa 1993, wow, such a long time ago) which was about having great sex at a time when sex was something we were enjoying quite a bit as well. “This Bed is on Fy-yah!” – Yeah, baby! And guess what? James is back with the official video for their new single “Dear John.” The stunning electro-ballad — which is about finding it hard to end relationships — is taken from the band’s current and critically acclaimed studio album titled Girl At The End Of The World, which is out now!
Still from “Dear John”
Directed by the award-winning animation director Péter Vácz, this beautiful, Tim Burton-esque video blends stop-motion with 2D and 3D animation to craft two deceptively real characters venturing into a mystical forest. James‘ front-man and chief lyricist, Tim Booth explains that the song was, inspired by the age of long term relationships being finished by a text. “A ‘Dear John letter’ was a letter a soldier received at the front from their loved one saying she’d finished with him,” he continues. “James have written songs that get played at weddings and funerals. Now we have made one for your divorce!”
“Dear John” premieres hot on the heels of James‘ storming set at Glastonbury, where the band officially opened the festival a couple of weekends ago, cutting a ribbon with Glastonbury founder Michael Eavis. Woo! Next up: The band will embark on a European festival tour, with dates in Spain, Greece and Portugal, and a co-headline slot at the OnBlackheath Festival in London on September 11th, 2016. Enjoy!
Sometimes, a Sunday morning — especially one that falls over a long, holiday weekend — begs for a gentle segue into wakefulness. It’s been a while since we featured a folk tune here on The Gig, but that was just because we were waiting for the perfect sweet surrender of Emily Jane White’s “Pallid Eyes.” As you will soon hear, it was worth it. This song is haunting for its soundtrack feel and aural similarity to wildly visual story-songs like Bobby Bare’s“In The Hills Of Shiloh,” which my parents used to play for me when I was a child. The classically understated video is all about serving the song, focusing on White’s face and stellar vocal performance, with just subtle background changes that move the action along without disturbing its seductive, rhythmic lull. White explains that the video “depicts a body, estranged from relational dysfunction, which dwells in patterns of isolation and dissociation. Greys and whites, opaque and frozen, express the heavy and numbing debility of this state.”
“Pallid Eyes” can be found on White’s fifth album, They Moved in Shadow All Together. The title is a play on the opening line from Cormac McCarthy’s novel Outer Dark, which hauntingly depicts a group of uncanny travelers descending a hill in the Appalachian mountains. White remembers being struck by the vision of the travelers’ collective movement – fragmented, yet whole – and felt its resonance with her record in progress and its thematic exploration of traumatic events.
White’s new body of work recounts for us the terrain of her empathic inner world. The breadth and depth of her maturing voice are evident. Her layered vocals effect a sense of camaraderie, a space populated with voices, angelic perhaps, definitively ethereal. She studied classical singing while working on this album, which enabled her to broaden her vocal range. Like Emily Jane White on the FaceBook at This Link. Enjoy!
Hey we’re back, bitches! Did you miss us? Sure you did. The Video Clip of The Week took a hiatus last Sunday, because we were having the time of our lives vacationing in Europe! But today we have a new music video treat for you: “Let the Light Flood In” courtesy of Lexington, Kentucky-based Dream the Electric Sleep. As you will soon discover, it was worth the wait.
So much lately, we find that “heavy music” has a vibrant pulse, but relies on screaming/growly vocals — which, no — or is just whiny, emo rock masquerading as the real thing — which we can spot a mile away. This is extremely unsatisfactory. Happily, Dream the Electric Sleep combine a spacey, heavy post-rock intensity with ’70s AOR and ’80s darkwave. Win win! The no-frills, black and white performance video tells you all you need to know about a super tight band that no doubt bring it on live. And doesn’t lead vocalist/guitarist Matt Page look just a little bit like a bearded Jim Morrison?
The band’s new album, Beneath The Dark Wide Sky, was recorded with Grammy Award-winning record producer Nick Raskulinecz in Nashville at Rock Falcon Studio, following up two independent releases, Lost and Gone Forever (2011) and Heretics (2014).
Beneath The Dark Wide Sky will be released via Mutiny Records on July 22nd, 2016. Enjoy!
Not to be confused with This Max Frost, thisMax Frost, is a one-man-band kind of guy who, like Prince, Trent Reznor and the great Joseph Arthur, has no need for any musical accompaniment, because he can do everything himself — and do it well. The video for his funky jam, “$Dreams” (Dollar Sign Dreams) should put you in a good mood for an entire day. Tell me I’m not right about that. See? You can’t even.
I’m not going to write much else, because I am on vacation in Europe, bitches. Like this Max Frost on the FaceBook at This Link! Enjoy!
If you love mysterious, nocturnal police pursuits, and Christmas, you’ll love this crazy great video for the song “Icon Love,” from the Minneapolis trio On An On; a band I am very happy to have just made the acquaintance of. This song has everything we like in a Sunday morning jam. Just listen, and you will know what I mean: it not only sounds good, it feels good, too. Win win.
The mind blowingly great video for “Icon Love” was directed by Phil Harder, whose credits include videos for Prince, Foo Fighters, Low, Pulp and many others. According to singer Nate Eiesland, the song “is about not giving up on something you’ve always wanted.” Good advice. On An On’s latest album, And The Wave Has Two Sides, has won attention for its strong songwriting and range, and has brought the band an even greater following. Enjoy!
ON AN ON is comprised by Nate Eiesland, Alissa Ricci, and Ryne Estwing